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The kiddo is attending his first day of first grade in a new school. I'm, of course, feeling anxious and hoping he adjusts to a new place relatively quickly. Not sure when I'll meet his new speech therapist -- hopefully within the next couple of weeks. I did meet his teacher this morning and she seemed very nice and a couple of his classmates did too.

Anyway, to distract myself, I spent a little bit of time outside with the camera this morning. As usual, there's fog rolling through and it reminds me of why some of this area is known as the Great Smoky Mountains. We've only been here since Saturday and I still have a lot of work to do on the house in addition to finding a job, but in all honesty, I've never felt more at ease in a new place than I do here. And if nothing else, the view here is worth it.

From my front yard this morning:

Four more under the cut, including goats, and a baby cow! )
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Didn't arrive at our new home until after 8:00 PM tonight. We are all exhausted. Tomorrow morning Sam's coming to help unload the U-Haul and the truck before he has to go into work.

Um, technically I'm not supposed to have service until Thursday, but someone near here has an unsecured wireless network and I'm borrowing just enough bandwidth to check e-mail and make this update. ^_^;; (And yes, I just used an anime emoticon. That's how you know I'm tired.)

Tomorrow's tasks (after unloading the trailer) are to get window a/c units and put away our clothes.
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Packing up some of my Dad's old LPs tomorrow and so I went through them tonight to finally get an idea of what I had. For a few of these I wish I still had a working record player since I was raised on some of these LPs. Anyway, I wanted to make a list and put it up here for me to refer to later.

Read more... )
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Dear Neighbors,

Thank you for taking the time tonight to illustrate one of the many reasons I won't miss you when I move this weekend. I hope the target shooting with your rifle in a residential area* continues to go well. Please note that my dog also thanks you for making her scared enough to go and hide in my bedroom. She really appreciates the loud booming noises that come out of nowhere.

Not Going to Miss You,


* = Yes, this is a residential area. However, due to the technicality that we are outside of the city limits and thus fall under the jurisdiction of the county sheriff's office, it is not illegal for them to fire their gun. It's incredibly stupid, irresponsible, and rude, but not illegal. A bullet can travel a very long distance, and seeing as each house around here is on a two to two-and-a-half acre lot, there's not much space between their backyard and their neighbors. Not to mention I can see them shooting their gun from my front yard.

I'm so posty today, but I am getting some things taken care of. I've already boxed up my pictures. Next I'm boxing up the kiddo's books and going through some of his toys to determine which are going to be given away and which are going with us.
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From my previous post, you can tell that I've been having "fun" with utility companies today. I finally scheduled a disconnect for AT&T for this weekend after, get this, thirty-three minutes and forty-five seconds on the phone. That's not including the twenty-two minutes I spent getting nowhere this morning. (Turns out I was adding an extra number to the address, but even Sam said he saw the same address written down on my lease as I did. Must have been the landlord's handwriting.)

To amuse myself while being forced to listen to Mozart and various AT&T advertisements during my hold times, I wrote out little notes on Post-It Notes marking the passage of time provided by my phone's timer. I'll share those notes with you now:

Read more... )

So overall, I've been up since 11:30 this morning and all I've really managed to accomplish is getting to the bank as planned.

Tonight I'm cleaning and vacuuming and possibly boxing up my books and the kiddo's books.
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Dear (Future) Electric Provider,

No, I can't come into your office today to sign paperwork. I told you, I'm in South Carolina and won't be back in North Carolina until Saturday...when your office is closed. So basically I'm stuck waiting until next Monday before I can have the power turned on in my name. This is the first time I've experienced a situation where I can't simply pay my deposit and start service over the phone (after providing some pertinent personal information, of course).

Really, you need a better system for people moving from out of state or even out of town.

Yours Truly,


Dear AT&T,

If I can pull my new address up on Google maps and have it be accurate, I'm pretty sure that means it exists. If someone has been living there for a few years prior to my renting the place, I'm also equally sure that means the address exists in the US Postal system directory too.

This is not a new residence, and I'm positive I've got the numbers right. Thanks for keeping me on the phone for 20 minutes -- 15 of which I was on hold -- only to tell me I have to call back when I've verified that my address is correct even though I've told you AT&T, while it services part of North Carolina, does not service this portion of North Carolina. I asked residents there and was told my options for phone service, and not one of them included AT&T. Not that I was planning on keeping your service anyway because it looks like I can get a better deal with the cable company.

My only comfort is that when I call you back, when I finally get to talk to a real person, the note will be in there about me needing to disconnect my service after verifying the correct address. Seriously, you guys have been great to me in all my years using your service (even back when it was Bellsouth), but this experience is really souring me because I know it's only because you want to keep my money.

Really Freaking Aggravated,


Dear Financial Person,

Oh thank you for letting me know the money is going to be there today. That's a huge load off my mind.



Dear New Landlord,

Um, yeah. I don't understand why they say the address doesn't exist either. Sorry this is such a hassle!


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No, really, they are! (Several pictures under the cut.) )

In case you didn't click on the links, I signed a lease yesterday on a house in the middle of 81 acres of farm land (beef cattle and goats). I'm right there in the mountains, and I honestly can't believe property so beautiful is available for me to rent at such a low, low price. The house needs a little work in the form of a fresh coat of paint, but I'll have plenty of space. The cats will get their own room (which will also be my computer/work room, but most of it will be theirs). The kiddo gets a room that's bigger than the one he has now, and the living room is bigger than the one I have now. The kitchen is small, but there's loads of pantry and cupboard space, so I can make it work. Oh, and my water? Free natural mountain spring water that's gravity fed from higher up some point on the mountain.

Even though I'm in the middle of nowhere, I'll have cable internet (no more dial-up!) and either cable TV or satellite (I haven't decided yet), and while my landlords are literally a few yards over, the wife of the pair is super friendly and very easy to talk to. That's a definite bonus for me. I have another neighbor (whose house you can see from the front yard), a retired gentleman who has been renting from the same landlords for a few years now. The dishwasher doesn't work, but I might be able to work some sort of deal out with them after I get settled in for a new one. That, and it's not like I've had a working dishwasher in the last few years.

Best of all, it's so quiet and peaceful, and did I mention cheap?

If I can find a job relatively soon, I won't have to stress over getting my house in order to sell. I can let them sit a bit longer and even do small repairs to the one I'm selling first. Of course, there's still my taxes on the places that have gone up considerably. Ugh, but I'm gong to tackle the hard parts first.

I'm heading back to SC to start getting some of the house in order over the weekend. I'll have to register the kiddo for school next week up here, and it looks like they start even earlier than SC, which means he might have to miss the first couple of days of school. I hate that, but I really can't move any faster. I'm going to rent a UHaul trailer (Oh man am I ever glad I kept Dad's truck) so we can move the major furniture next week. Sam's coming down Monday and Tuesday to try and get it done.

It's going to be a stressful first month, but things are looking up.

Okay, and in a bit I'll post a bit about what we did today. There was a craft show being held locally and Sam's mom went to sell her pottery. They had some amazing local talent putting on music and loads of amazing craftsmen and artists. This place is so different and amazing compared to what I'm used to.
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Yes, you read that right. Free books.

Even if I don't move to North Carolina this summer (it's looking less and less likely sadly), these books are just taking up space on my bookshelf that I can use for books I intend to keep around (like my Steven Brust books, which will have to be pried from my cold, dead hands).

Ahem, anyway, since I assume shipping on one or two books won't be too bad, especially if I space it out, I don't mind sending these books out free of charge to people who want them. I know I've got some bibliophiles on my list who might be interested in them.

Most of them I've read; I think maybe one or two I simply couldn't finish. It's not that they're necessarily bad, just that they weren't my cup of tea and/or I don't see myself ever re-reading them. (Yes, even the Pratchett books. I know, I'm a terrible person!)

The majority are in good condition, though a couple might have some stains. All of them are paperback. None are damaged to the point where you can't read them. If you ask, I'll tell you about their condition, and if you want (and you're too lazy to use Google or Amazon), I can post the back-cover blurbs here. Just leave a comment.

I might find more books as I go through some other boxes and closets, but those I'll put in a new entry.

P.S.: No laughing or snickering at the fact I spent money on one or two of these.

The list of books available, cut to spare your friends' page. )
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I am so tired. And sore. And stiff.

I am taking the day off to relax, do some writing, and just plain recover from yesterday's drive. I'll post more about the trip later, but suffices to say that we had a blast and things went really well for 98% of the trip.

Tomorrow I start e-mailing about some rental properties I want to check out when I go back up in a couple of weeks. I hope I can find a place this month, do the move over the next month, and at least be living there in NC by the end of July. My uncle has made an offer, though my neighbor here might offer me a bit more money. We'll see. Either way, I'll have enough of a financial cushion to pay rent and utilities, though I certainly hope to have a job before winter hits as my utilities will be pretty high if the weather is anything like this past winter. Also, as far as jobs are concerned, I'm not picky. While I can certainly qualify for more than grocery clerk, if that's what I need to take until I can find something better, I'll do it. Plus, I just plain want to have a job again, and work again. I miss it.

Nothing much else is happening. Sasha has been exceedingly happy to be back home, so has Penny. The cats are grateful, though Prissy is still doing her "I'll fuss at you and then ignore you" thing she does when she's mad at me for disappearing.

And thanks to those of you who offered good thoughts and energy. I promise I'll respond, I sort of passed out last night and have been running on fumes. If I'd commented, it'd probably have read "Braaaaaaaaaaiiiiiinssss," or "Durrrrrrrrrrrr."

More later.
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I went ahead and unfriended some people who hadn't responded back. There's two more I'm holding out on hoping they'll friend me back. (One of them I know may not be at hir computer for another few days, and the other seems to be busy so I'll just wait.) If you are just now realizing what happened and would still like to be friended, just friend me and drop me a line. Again, I'm not upset and I wasn't looking to be "rid" of anyone, it was just some LiveJournal fail and human error. Also, if you are still on my f-list and haven't filled out the poll for filters, make sure to do so soon. Of course, you can ask to be added or removed from filters at any time, but the poll just helps me out a little bit and gives me a point of reference.

I'm actually kind of surprised at who wished to stay and who didn't get back to me, but that's neither here nor there and I am happy to have all of you here. Yes, even you. You know who you are.*

I'm not sure when I'll get back to reopening and tagging old entries. I'm thinking I should wait until this weekend before doing the next batch because most of that will cover the tail end of Dad's illness and his death. Seeing as tomorrow and Thursday are going to be very busy days between speech, occupational therapy, and t-ball, I'll be physically wiped which might put me in a bad spot emotionally to handle going over some of that stuff. So yes, I think waiting until Saturday to do it might be a better idea for me. Then again, I might start from 2006 and work forward instead of going backwards as I have. We'll see.

I like my new tagging system and think I'll have an easier time of digging up old entries and stuff when it's done (believe it or not that was a constant issue with me, particularly when it came to some gaming stuff I posted about). Also, I realize I am being amazingly anal about this, which on the one hand kind of surprises me, but on the other I'm reminded that there are moments when I must organize little pockets of my life to an absurd degree. It's shocking that for being such a slob, I can at least make my computer-related stuff neat and organized.

Emotionally and mentally I'm feeling a little better. If I could get the sleep thing down I'd be doing really well, but I'll take what I can get so far. Penny is recovering well from her vet visit, and I take her and Sasha back in two weeks for check-ups plus Sasha's yearly shots (I can't believe it's already been a year!). Jack's not due for shots until November, and before I move I'll try to get Prissy an appointment just so I can have one neat little set of vet records for all the pets.

Speaking of moving, I'm going to declare the month of May my month to sort through stuff to figure out what to keep and what to get rid of. I'll also start boxing up things I want to take with me but don't need access to at the moment. There are going to be some books and probably the odd knick-knack or two that I'll be wanting to get rid of. If anyone shows any interest when I post about that stuff, I'll be willing to work something out regarding mailing and shipping. (Oh, [livejournal.com profile] davensjournal, I found the books I was supposed to send to you months ago the other day. I still have your mailing address so when I remember to put them in the truck and can get to the post office, I'll send them.)

I am really hoping to find a place no later than July so we can be moved in with some weeks to spare before the school year starts. The kiddo will probably have to go for an evaluation at whatever school we wind up at, though they might accept his IEPs from here that will include his test scores at the end of the year - at least I think they'll be doing end of year re-evaluations for him down here. I have already informed his speech therapist that there is a very good chance we will be moving so she can get everything together. She was sad at the news (she's worked with the kiddo for three years now and absolutely adores him), but she said her and her husband are contemplating a move as well, though they may not move for another year or two.

There'll probably be more later. For now I have to tackle the kiddo's homework, which thankfully isn't much seeing as he gets to go on a field trip to the zoo tomorrow.

* = Not actually directed at anyone...or is it? I like to make people paranoid on occasion.
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Right, so that Really Big News(TM) I was alluding to? Well, it's not exactly what I thought it would be, but there is still big news.

Sam's been staying with his family in North Carolina this past week and during his stay, his father was offered a possible chance to own his own restaurant (his father is a professional chef). Well, the plan fell through for this year, but he will probably do it next year.

What does this have to do with Sam and me? When his father thought he might get the restaurant, he asked if Sam would stay and assist him with running it given that Sam is still looking for a job and he has always wanted to move back to North Carolina eventually. Sam brought this up to me and suggested me moving to North Carolina as an alternative to Atlanta. I jumped at the offer for several reasons, one of them being that the cost of living is significantly lower. Tonight he told me that despite the restaurant gig falling through, he's decided to stay in North Carolina and look for work there.

I had thought that I would have to put my plans to move on hold for another year, something that has been causing significant anxiety and stress on me for obvious reasons. However, given that North Carolina is cheaper and I should have an easier time of finding a house with room for the dogs to run around (and Jack who thinks he's a dog), I believe that I can pull off a move this summer. I already know I have a potential buyer for this house, or can find someone willing to snatch up this place fairly quickly, but with North Carolina, I probably wouldn't have the pressure to sell as quickly as I would moving to some place as pricey as Atlanta. (And I do have some money stashed away anyway.)

The area I'll be looking at is around Asheville (a place I fell in love with way back in '93 when I went on a school trip). Sam's parents live about half an hour from there in a tiny little town - always nice to have family nearby - plus they know the area well and can recommend shools, jobs, etc. I don't mind living in a small town, especially not with Asheville close by and given that at least it's not this small town I'm in now. I spoke with my mother about it and she was ecstatic at the possibility of me moving there as opposed to Atlanta, and my aunt was equally excited about me being near the mountains, so having the backing of my family will be awesome.

So, that's the Really Big News. I'm finally moving, and while it's not Atlanta, I think it'll work out better for Sam and me in the long run. It helps that Sam was planning on returning to NC eventually anyway, and I've always had NC on my list of top five places to move to. Even better? I'll only be about a four and half-hour drive from my hometown, so pretty much the same as if I moved to Atlanta anyway.

I'll have more information later.


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Wrathful and Unrepentant Jade

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